Thursday, January 31, 2013

Dark Chocolate Cake

I baked this cake for my nephew's Christmas eve gathering with his Sixth Former friends.   His friends told him 'Nice Cake'.  A very strong chocolaty cake, good for afternoon tea.  Can dust some icing sugar on top of slices of cake for added sweetness.
[use 8" square tin - line the base with greaseproof paper and greased the sides lightly]
150 gm cooking dark chocolate
100 gm butter
100 ml milk
50 gm cocoa powder - sifted
60 gm plain flour - sifted
5 egg yolks 
  1. Preheat oven at 180 degrees C.
  2. Melt butter and chocolate together in a double boiler until soft and smooth [I steamed for 10 minutes].  Stir in milk and set aside to cool.
  3. Add egg yolks to cooled chocolate mixture in a mixing bowl.  Beat to mix well and lightly fold in sifted flours.   Set aside.
5 egg whites
1 tsp cream of tartar
150 gm castor sugar
  1. Whisk egg whites until frothy.  Add in cream of tartar and continue to whisk until foamy.
  2. Add in sugar in 3 batches and whisk continuously until stiff.
  3. Mix egg whites into egg yolk mixture in 3 batches.
  4. Pour batter into baking tin.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until cooked.  Test with a skewer.
  6. Remove to cool on a wire rack.  Unmold and slice into pieces to serve.


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Braised Pork Belly with Canned Peanuts

My neighbour has several cans of braised peanuts lying in her pantry and asked for what best way to clear them.  I suggested that she can braised pork belly [hong sao rou] then just dump in the peanuts since her grandchildren loves peanuts cooked in whatever ways.  True enough, not only the grandchildren likes it, the family finished the dish in one meal.
This is the braised pork belly with peanuts which I cooked for my neighbour at her kitchen.   You can increased the seasoning if you prefer stronger flavour.  This dish should be suitable for CNY eve ancestral prayers too.
600 gm pork belly - cut bite size pieces
3-4 slices ginger
2 stalks spring onion - cut long strips
2 cans braised peanuts - drain off soaking liquid
3 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp rock sugar to taste
3 tbsp Shaoxing wine - more for stronger flavour if preferred
enough water to cover pork pieces
  1. Heat up a heavy based saucepan.  Put in the pork pieces in the heated pan [choose those more fatty parts] to pan fry for awhile or until slightly browned.  Put in the balance pork, pan fry for another 5 minutes.
  2. Push pork pieces aside and using the oil in the pan, fry ginger and spring onions until fragrant.  Then add in oyster sauce and light soy sauce.  Stir to coat pork pieces with seasoning, then pour in the wine.  Add in rock sugar.  Bring it to a boil, then pour in enough water to cover meat.  Let it boil for a few minutes. Taste to adjust seasoning.
  3. Cover and lower heat to simmer for about 40 - 45 minutes until meat is tender and sauce is reduced [if good saucepan is used, the simmering time may be about 20 minutes].  Remove spring onion and ginger slices.
  4. Add in braised peanuts.  Bring to a boil for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Serve with plain white rice or over a plate of fresh salad leaves or blanched broccoli florets.

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013
hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover

Nasi Lemak Lover

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Orange Cocoa Marble Chiffon Cake

This chiffon cake was baked in a loose bottom square tin without lining the base or greasing the sides.  The cake shrinks quite a bit but it's alright.  I should have baked it in a tube pan, then it may not shrink so much.  Anyway, it's a lovely chiffon cake  -texture and taste wise.  Soft and spongy.

Ingredients for Egg Yolk Mixture
[use 7" loose base square tin or tube pan]
3 egg yolks [used large eggs]
2 tbsp castor sugar
40 ml oil
90 ml fresh orange juice [from 1-2 oranges]
90 gm cake flour sifted with 1/2 tsp baking powder
1-2 tbsp cocoa powder mix with 2-3 tsp water into a paste
  • Whisk egg yolks with sugar and salt till creamy, then drizzle in oil.  Continue whisking for awhile then drizzle in orange juice.  Fold in the flour, combine well.  Set aside while you whisk the egg  white.  Preheat oven at 180 degrees C.

Ingredients for Egg White Mixture

4 egg white
3 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

  • Whisk egg white until frothy then add in cream of tartar.  Continue whisking until foamy then gradually add in sugar.  Whisk until stiff peaks formed.
  • Fold in 1/3 portion of meringue into egg yolk mixture.  Mix until well incorporated.  Then fold mixture into balance meringue,  Mix well.   
  • Remove about 4 tbsp batter to a bowl and mix with cocoa paste until well blended.
  • Pour 1/3 of plain batter into 7" square loose bottom pan, drop some cocoa batter all over it.  Top with another 1/3 of plain batter then a little cocoa batter. Do the same for the balance batters.
  • Use a skewer to create marble effect for cake.
  • Bake in preheated oven at 180 degrees C for  10 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 160 degrees C and bake for another 30 minutes.  
  • Invert pan immediately after baking to cool cake on wire rack.
  • Remove cake from pan, then use a serrated knife to slice cake before serving.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Braised Pork Belly [Bak Chang Filling]

This is a rice dumpling [bak chang] pork belly filling which I fried then braised until tender.  A very fragrant and aromatic braised pork belly dish that's my hubby's favourite which I used to steam rice in aluminium cans.
600 gm pork belly - cut into about 15 pieces
5-6 dried mushrooms - soaked and halved
8-10 Chinese walnuts - soaked and boiled until soft
2 tbsp each of chopped shallots and garlic
1 tbsp oil
3 tbsp oyster sauce
3 tbsp light soy sauce to taste
2 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp 5 spice powder
2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar to taste
enough water
  1. Heat oil in pan to fry chopped shallots and garlic until golden brown.  Add in pork belly and all the seasoning ingredients.  Continue frying meat until firm and well coated with seasoning.  Add in mushrooms and walnuts.
  2. Add in enough water to cover the ingredients.  Bring to boil, then lower heat to simmer until meat is tender and gravy reduced.
  3. Serve with plain white rice.
I used this meat dish [half portion] to steam rice in aluminium cans and served rice with Japanese Style Salad [see recipe here].

Japanese Style Salad

Prepared this salad to serve with my Bak Chang meat filling steamed rice in can.  This salad goes well with fried rice too.

A light and refreshing salad that is easy to prepare.  A little sourish, salty salad and fragrance of fried garlic oil.

4 pieces cabbage leaves [can use both white and purple cabbage] - shredded
1 cucumber - seeded and shredded
1 carrot - shredded
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
3 tbsp Apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp sugar
2-3 tbsp fried garlic oil or sesame oil
  1. Mix seasoning in a big bowl.
  2. Shred all the vegetables.
  3. Toss well shredded vegetables with dressing.
  4. Stir in sesame seeds.
  5. Chill salad until required.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Lemon Apricot Cookies - CNY 2013

This cookie has the tangy taste of lemon and sweetness from the dried apricot.  Nice and easy to make that does not require moulding, just pinch and drop the dough onto baking tray.

[makes about 150 pieces]
200 gm butter
160 gm castor sugar
60 gm yoghurt
1 large egg
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 tbsp grated lemon zest
100 gm dried apricots - cut small cubes
380 gm plain flour - sifted
1/2 tsp baking powder
  1. Combine butter, salt and sugar in a mixing bowl.  Beat until light and fluffy, then beat in egg and yoghurt.
  2. Gradually fold in sifted flour and baking powder into creamed mixture until well combined.
  3. Add in dried apricots and lemon zest.  Mix well.
  4. Drop heaping teaspoonfuls of dough about a cm apart onto prepared lined baking trays.
  5. Bake in preheated oven at 170 degrees C for 15-20 minutes or until cookies are fluffy and golden around edges.
  6. Let cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely before storing in airtight container.

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013
hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover

Nasi Lemak Lover

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Rosette Custard Butter Cookies - CNY 2013

A simple butter cookie with nice orange colour from the custard powder.  This buttery, crispy cookie is not sweet at all.  The dough is easy to handle and for piping with any star nozzle mould.
[makes 120 pieces]
175 gm butter
150 icing sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1/4 tsp salt
270 gm plain flour - sifted together with together with custard powder and baking powder
75 gm custard powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
4-5 red cherries - diced

  1. Cream butter and icing sugar until light.  Add egg, vanilla essence and salt.  Continue beating until creamy and fluffy.
  2. Stir in sifted dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
  3. Remove a portion of the mixture into a piping bag with a star nozzle fitted to it.
  4. Pipe star rosettes onto baking trays lined with parchment paper.
  5. Place a piece of diced red cherries on each rosette.
  6. Bake in preheated oven at 180 degrees C for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Remove to cool on wire rack before storing in airtight container.

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013
hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover

Nasi Lemak Lover

Friday, January 25, 2013

Dates [Kurma] Cookies - CNY 2013

This dates [kurma] cookie does not require moulds.  A drop cookie mixture type that's fast to make and bake.

180 gm butter
130-150 gm caster sugar
a pinch of salt
1 tbsp double cream - optional
2 tsp vanilla essence
1 large egg
250 gm self raising flour 
50 gm rice flour
1/4 tsp bicarbonate soda
180 gm dates [kurma] -seeds removed and cut into thin strips or chips
  1. Sieve self raising flour, rice flour and bicarbonate of soda together.  Mix in the dates to flour mixture.
  2. Cream butter with sugar, salt and vanilla essence until light and fluffy.  Add in egg and double cream or thick milk.  Beat until creamy and light.
  3. Fold in sifted flour and dates to cream mixture.  Mix well
  4. Drop a teaspoonful of dough onto baking tray lined with parchment paper, leaving some space in between dough.
  5. Baked in preheated oven at 180 degrees C for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Remove from oven and transfer cookies to cool on wire rack before storing in airtight container.

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013
hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover

Nasi Lemak Lover

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Hup Toh Soh [Chinese Walnut Biscuit] - CNY 2013

This is a CNY cookie from Cheah of No Frills.   It's a lovely cookies which is 'soh, soh, soh' [very crispy].  My hubby says it is nicer than peanut cookies which are soft and melt-in the mouth.  This cookie has a bite but very buttery too.

I made two portions of this recipe which yields about 120 pieces [2 bottles] Chinese Walnut Biscuit.
[original recipe from Cheah of No Frills]
250 gm self raising flour
80 gm castor sugar [I used 60 gm icing sugar]
50 gm coarsely chopped roasted walnut [I grind them fine]
150 gm margarine 
1 egg beaten with a pinch of salt for glazing
  1. Sift the self-raising flour into a mixing bowl.
  2. Cut in the margarine, add in the sugar and the chopped walnuts. 
  3. Mix thoroughly until the dough does not stick onto the hands.
  4. Pinch off some dough and form into a ball, make a small dent in the centre.  Place the biscuits onto a baking sheet, leaving some room between each biscuit.
  5. Brush them  with beaten egg wash.
  6. Bake in preheated oven @ 180 degrees C for  30 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Cool completely on a wire rack before storing in cookie jar.

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013
hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover

Nasi Lemak Lover